Jul 26

The Things I See

One part of the trail I walk on is across the river from the old Riverside/Oak Hill Cemetary. On one particular part of the trail I see what I call the “Vampire Crypts”. Here for your viewing pleasure:

The Crypt

Somebody/thing’s been going in or going out:

The Crypt

Even the angels weep:

The Crypt

Jul 21

Friday Snippet — Saturday Edition

No progress on Washed in the Blood this week, so I’m dipping into the vault for something else. Short, but not so sweet

This work is copyrighted (c) 2007 by Carter Nipper. You can also grab a copy on my Free Samples page (it’s in Dogs of War).

—–

Where the Heart Is

My folks were waiting when I got off the bus. They were gray, wrinkled, dusty, like linens stored too long in the attic. Like ghosts.

Winter in the South is dreary. We passed miles and miles of yellow grass and brown leaves along the way. Did I really grow up in that wasteland?

After we got there, I walked around looking, listening. In the barn, I saw the dust floating golden in the sun, smelled the hay and wood. I heard Ben and Clint and me giggling over some silly thing, but they weren’t really there. Just cobwebs and dust.

At the creek, I sat on the bank, surrounded by the rocks from our last attempt at a dam. The water was clear and cold, and crawdaddies hid under the rocks. I heard no voices; saw no ghosts.

That night was the longest night of my life. When it got that quiet in country, we would grab our M-16s and head for our holes, because sure-as-Hell Charlie was up to something. I expected to hear the whistle of incoming at any moment. When the rooster crowed, I dove under the bed.

I don’t live there anymore. Those places, those people are dead to me.

After I got to Pendleton, they were glad to ship me back to Baker Company on the next flight. Gave me another stripe, too. I’m a Corporal, now. Won’t the guys get a hoot!

It sure will be good to see the guys again: Larry and Mud-Boy and Grif and Junebug. Hell, even the Loot and the First Sergeant. I brought a new deck of cards for the never-ending poker game. Those old Bicycles were pretty ragged when I left.

There’ll be some cherries there, too. We’ll get to show them how to survive. I wonder how many of this batch will make it. I won’t join the pool, though. I never liked putting money on a man’s life.
I didn’t know about the pool when I was cherry. I guess that was good. It turns out I was second on the list of six of us. Numbers one and three bought it pretty quick. I got lucky–just a hole in the arm and a Purple Heart. I didn’t duck quick enough–no instinct for it yet. Only the Marines give a man a medal for being too slow getting out of the way.

We’re up in the Highlands, now, running search-and-destroys around Pleiku. Beats the Hell out of rice paddies in the Delta. At least it won’t be so damned hot all the time. The mosquitoes won’t be as bad.

I better wrap it up; we’ll have to land hot. Looks quiet right now, but Charlie will give me a two-mortar salute. I’ll be glad to get out of this damn Huey. Can’t even hear myself think in here.
Sure feels good to be home.

END

 

Jul 15

A Record of Sorts

I now have 9 stories and articles in submission as of last night. My previous record was 6. Woot!

One of the benefits of being bipolar is the brief manic periods that allow me to get so much done in so little time. By working when and how I can during the crashes, I can be prepared to make a run on things and get them ready and sent out.

The down side, of course, is when the rejection come flowing back, especially if I am in a depression at the time. That’s when I kick my ass from Hell to New Jersey for sending out such obvious utter shit and permanently ruining my chances of ever getting published, which are slim to none anyway, sonce I can’t write worth a shit, so why bother, for that matter, why bother even living?

But then, I know another hypomania will come along sooner or later, and I can start again.

“Life sucks, and then you die”, the saying goes. In the meantime, let’s have a little fun and get something accomplished.

Jul 13

Friday Snippet

Picking up where I left off last week on Washed in the Blood. This snippet takes us up to pretty where I am at this point. Things are going to take a bad turn here, but I just haven’t written it yet.

Copyrighted, full of stupid mistakes, etc. Watch your step.


Bob Sperling sat at his desk and held his life in his hands. Thirty-two years of marriage, three kids—the youngest, Jason, was a Junior at UGA this year, pre-med, 3.9 GPA—thirty-five years in law enforcement, the last ten as Night Shift Supervisor. Fifty-two years of life, a good life, and the photographs in his hand, eleven of them, would end it all, ruin him. Eleven tarot cards, each and every one of them the Death card.

He remembered the first time he saw Maggie. She and John were new in town. They made a striking couple as they entered the First Christian Church in downtown Oak Hill. He was tall, distinguished, a face hard as shale, with flat planes. His pale blue eyes saw right to the heart of things. And people.

Maggie was six months pregnant. She carried the baby well and had the indefinable glow that so many pregnant women wear. Her rich auburn hair flowed in waves over her shoulders, and she stood tall and straight as a fir tree.

Bob had loved her from that first moment, and had conspired to sit close to her in church, to run into her in the Piggly Wiggly, to drive by her house on patrol.

Maggie had welcomed his attention. She welcomed all who would be friends. She was just that kind of person. It had no taken long for him to make arrangements to cut John and Maggie’s grass when he was away on his extended trips.

Then came the day. THE day. Deborah was being kept by Maggie’s friend Martha. When Bob showed up to do the mowing, Maggie was wearing a two-piece bathing suit that was at least two sizes too small. Beb remembered thinking it was probably illegal in Georgia. Her full breasts hung out the sides, her round butt was covered by only a token of cloth.

While Maggie knelt and weeded in the garden, Bob attempted to mow. He kept looking over at that glorious butt and going off course. One of those times, he ran right over an apple tree the Edwards had just planted. When the tree twanged off the mower, Maggie looked up, grinned, and wiggled her rear end.

Bob had hurried through the rest of the yard. Far from his best effort. When Maggie invited him in for a glass of tea, he had wound up having Maggie on the living room floor. Two helpings. He still could not go into their house without seeing the stain that was not there.

From that day forward, theirs had been an unspoken affair. Purely sexual, though. They loved each other, of course, and Bob loved John just as Bonny loved Maggie. There was no question of divorce or any such foolishness, just pure animal need and release. Just plain fun.

Your sins will find you out, though, and now Bob held eleven photographs of two people having sex in Maggie Edwards’s bed. One of them was unmistakably Maggie Edwards, and she was unmistakably having a great time. The other was unmistakably not John Edwards. It was Bob Sperling, the investigator now saddled with looking into his lover’s death and mutilation.

He wanted to know who took these pictures. They looked like stills from a bad video, and the angle was obvious. One more avenue to investigate. He would have to visit the crime scene again. He really didn’t want to go back there.

A knock on his door shattered his memories into wicked shards of reality, and he dropped the photos. They fluttered like flamed-out moths onto his desk.

“Sarah Williams is out here, Bob. You better come on.” Deputy Parker’s face was white, and Bob know this was going to be bad. He stood and left his office at a fast walk. He really didn’t need any more bad tonight.

#

Sarah was cold–even her bones were frozen. She knew what “cold as the grave” meant. Even so, she sweated. The thin, scratchy jail blanket that Melody had wrapped her in was starting to get soaked. The pressure in her eyes threatened to pop them, and her chest was so tight, she could hardly breathe. She thought she might scream, but couldn’t enough air into her lungs.

When Inspector Sperling walked in, she began to relax. The large detective radiated calm and competence. The large, square-looking gun on his belt helped, too. She knew she was safe, now. No monster would get through this man.

He sat in the chair next to her. “Sarah?” His deep voice echoed in her stomach. “Sarah? Can you tell me what happened?”

“It—he—I—I—mon-monster-he–” She shivered, shuddered. Her throat closed.

A large, calloused hand lay gently on her shoulder, and she began to breathe again. The bass rumble came again, gentle, and comforting.

“Let’s do this the easy way. Can you say where?”

“The—the—the old m—m—mine.”

“And you were there with?”

“D-d-d-”

“Danny.”

She nodded. Tears spilled down her cheeks, and the visions would not stop. Maybe they never would.

“You said something about a monster. Can you say who or what?”

“He-he-Prea-Prea-Preacher…”

She felt the big man shift.

“Edwards? Preacher Edwards?”

She only nodded, then bent double and retched violently. A small dribble of bile ran onto the floor.

“Melody!” The detective’s voice was stern and powerful. “Get an ambulance over here now! And tell them to keep it quiet, for God’s sake! No lights or sirens!”

Sarah floated toward the floor on a cushion of angel wings and heard no more.

#

The night wind blew wild across Carver’s Bald, swaying the long grass in waves and swirls. John faced into the wind and spread his arms wide. His fifty-mile run had not even left him breathing hard. He wanted to hurt. He wanted to feel his lungs burn, his muscles ache with effort. He wanted to fly, to soar, to plummet to his death like Icarus at the rising of the sun. To get away. To escape himself, his present, and his future.

His thoughts scurried around his brain, frenzied mice in search of a way out of the maze, finding none. His eyes fastened on a small cemetery not far above the tree line. Rude wooden slabs and crosses and a few upright stones marked places where someone’s loved ones rested peacefully among the soil and stone.

John’s demons flitted among the stones, searching for a peace he knew was far from their grasp. Or his. Maggie. Deborah. Alyssa. Thomas. The young couple at the mine. He fell to his knees and bowed his head.

Prayerful words fled from him in panic. Curses bubbled in his throat, a superheated geyser pushing inexorably toward release. He searched his mind, delved into his soul, but grace had abandoned him. The Rock of Ages had crumbled to gravel.

He flung his head back and released his agony and his rage to the uncaring stars. His howl tore at his throat, battered his ears. He spewed his soul into the night, ripped its anchors from their grip, and let the wind take it where it would.

When at last, it was done, when its last human breath had spent itself, the beast that had once been John Edwards slumped into the grass and let the red, flaming rage and black, tarry despair that was now its only existence fill the void.

Moon and stars, wind and stone, grass and ghosts continued on their eternal ways and remembered him no more.

#

The chugging of the portable generator echoed through the morning silence, and the spotlights it powered cast a harsh, unreal light on the gruesome scene. Sharp edged pieces of the fleeing night hid under everything in sight. Even man’s technology could not banish the darkness completely.

Detective Sperling finished his examination of the body, rose to his feet and strode toward the command center, snapping the latex gloves from his hands.

The deputy continued to look at the body. The boy’s skin was unnaturally white, and the gaping wound in side of his neck looked like a mouth gasping its life away, or maybe roaring a defiant call for vengeance.

As Sperling approached, the deputy asked “Do you know who it–he–is?”

The detective turned chiseled granite eyes on him. “Yeah, I know him. Danny Potter. Family lives over on Tall Pines. Goes to our church. He and Sarah been dating a few months now.” Sperling heaved a big sigh. “Didn’t know they’d been hanging out up here.”

Sperling grabbed a walkie-talkie off the card table that served as their crime scene desk. He keyed the mike and spoke rapidly. “Melody. Put out an APB for John Edwards. Description: Fifty-nine. Six foot two. Hundred and eighty-five pounds. Hair mostly gray with a sprinkling of brown. Wanted for multiple murders. Considered armed and extremely dangerous. Put that out on GCIS and NCIS while you’re at it, and add ‘Be prepared to shoot to kill” to it. When you put it on the local net, you can leave off the ‘be prepared to’ part. Yeah, just ‘shoot to kill’.”

He started to put the radio back on the table, then lifted it to his mouth again. “Melody, one more thing. Get Bill Elder into my office ASAP. He should still be at the paper getting tomorrow’s edition ready. Tell him to stop everything and get over there. I want this story in tomorrow’s paper. Thanks.” This time, he did set the radio down.

The deputy looked at the stone-faced detective, who was staring off down the hillside. “Are you sure you want to do that? Put this in the paper, I mean?”

Sperling turned his head. “Why not?”

“Aren’t you afraid of panic? There’s no telling what people might do.”

“I’d rather they got the story from me than from some wild rumor. Besides, I want everybody around here to be scared. I want ’em to be scared as fuck. There’s a monster loose in these woods. Whatever John Edwards is, he sure as shit ain’t human anymore. Hell, yeah, I want ’em scared, scared enough to shoot first if he comes around.”

 

Jul 07

Bad Karma

SpamKarma2 has been eating comments. If yours disappears, use the “Talk To Me” button to send me a note, and I’ll rescue it.

Jul 06

Friday Snippet — More from WITB

I know I said I wouldn’t post any more from this novel-in-agony, but progress has been made, and I wanted to share some good violent action with those who can stand it.

The set-up: After we last left John, he was holed up in an abandoned mine for the night. These scenes begin when he wakes up at sunset.

All work copyright (c) 2007 by Carter Nipper. All rights reserved. Raw material here which contains errors and omissions and may or may not ever see the light of day or the dark of night again.

If you need to catch up on this story see:

this, and
this


John snapped awake to darkness and silence. He lay for a long moment listening, but heard only the natural underground sounds of the old mine: the small rustle of bat wings, the slow drip of water, and occasional creak of old timber supports. He could not remember going to sleep.

The fire in his belly and the thirst in his mouth were worse than ever. A furnace of thirst that mere water could not quench ate at him from the inside, but slowly, oh, so very slowly. Much like the Burning Bush, he burned and burned, but was not consumed. He had to feed.

He stood and staggered until he ran into a wall of stone. The strength in his knees wavered like firelight, his vision shimmered like moonlight on a wind-blown pond. He had to feed, and soon. He would find no food in this underground haven; he would have to venture out into the world again, brave the dangers in order to survive.

He gathered the few wits available to him and forced enough clarity to remember his path into this deep place. He wasted no time, had no time left to waste, and staggered and stumbled back up the rock-strewn corridors toward the surface.

He may have wandered for hours, he did not know. His rationality faded into a haze of red want and hot need. The brush of cool air on his cheek revived him enough to keep him moving forward toward moonlight and salvation. At last, he saw the dark trees keeping their patient vigil outside. And he saw something else, something that pushed his mind aside and sent a blood-hungry monster hurtling forward.

#

{{Cut portion of scene due to pretty explicit sex. Trying to keep public snippets only extremely violent. It’s the American Way.}}

Sarah tumbled over onto her belly and scraped a few feet across the dirt and rock, until Danny was ripped out of her, off her, away from her. Her cry of surprise was drowned in his shriek of agony and the animal growl from the dark form that pinned his pale one to the ground.

Sarah rose onto all fours, shocked by the suddenness of the attack. What was it? A bear? There were still some around. It didn’t look shaggy like a bear would, though. She scrambled forward to help her boyfriend, whose kicks were quickly weakening as his shrieks bubbled and died.

She put her hands on their attacker and pushed as hard as she could. She was shocked at the feel of cloth under her palms. Clothes? This was a person? She was shocked breathless, and urine warmed her thighs when the figure turned a snarling, bloody face to her. Rising hysteria and panic drove her backward, lifted her to her feet, and flung her down the mountainside in a screaming frenzy.

She ran nearly blind in the darkness, bouncing off trees, tripping over rocks, tearing through brush, but feeling nothing. That face filled her mind, the face of a monster, a face she recognized.

The fire in her lungs, and a knife-stabbing pain in her side finally brought her to a sobbing halt beside Fowler’s Creek at the bottom of the mountain. She fell to her knees, wrapping her arms around her as she began to feel the sharp air of a fall night whipping around her. Every breath hurt, and she expected to feel hands around her throat, the impact of a rock on her head, at any moment.

She slowly caught her breath and regained enough of her wits to try to figure out what to do next. Police. She needed the police. Danny was hurt. She pushed the other thought away, not willing to give in to despair yet. He was hurt, just hurt. Get the police.

She dipped her hands into the icy water and splashed her face. The cold shock drove her panic a little further back, and she stood and stumbled through the shallow creek, climbed the bank on the other side, and began trotting down the highway toward town.

She knew she was naked. She didn’t care. The only thing that mattered was that Danny was hurt, and a killer was loose on the mountain. Just get help. Worry about everything else later. When headlights appeared around the curve ahead of her, she staggered out into the middle of the road, waving frantically.

#

John knelt on the cold, hard ground beside the dead boy and once more wished he could weep. What had he done? What had he become? He groaned, sure that the shame and misery he felt were only a shadowy reflection of the agony that awaited him in Hell.

The blind, burning, animal blood-lust that had driven him had faded now, slaked, sated by the feast of blood, the young life that nourished his evil soul. He buried his face in his hands, not wanting to see that face again, knowing it would haunt his mind forever.

He had snuffed a young man’s life like a candle in a tornado. And to what purpose? To feed the monster he had become, to perpetuate the evil for his own selfish purposes, to give him the strength to wreak vengeance on his enemy.

“Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord,” he groaned. “I will repay.” What right had he to arrogate unto himself those rights that God had reserved unto Himself? Had he risen so far in his pride, that he could fall so low? He groaned again, the pain in his heart a whip scourging his mind again and again and again, forever and ever, amen.

The pain overcame his reason, its whip driving him to his feet, out into the night. He ran. Over ridges, falling into ravines, climbing sheer walls, with no purpose, no direction, he ran. All he wanted was to get away—far, far, away, as if distance could dull his agony.

His paws, dug divots from the soil. Paws? He looked down. Paws. A long muzzle. Smells like he had never smelled before, a skein of life and death flowing around and through him. Paws, muzzle. He looked around. Tail. Wolf. The better to run through woods at night. He ran.

{snip}

P.S. I’m trying the original Linkies script one last time. If it blows up again, I may well blow up as well.

 

Jul 04

I Can Tell You What It’s All About, Charlie Brown

Declaration of Independence

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:

Column 1
Georgia:
Button Gwinnett
Lyman Hall
George Walton

Column 2
North Carolina:
William Hooper
Joseph Hewes
John Penn
South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge
Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Arthur Middleton

Column 3
Massachusetts:
John Hancock
Maryland:
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
Virginia:
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton

Column 4
Pennsylvania:
Robert Morris
Benjamin Rush
Benjamin Franklin
John Morton
George Clymer
James Smith
George Taylor
James Wilson
George Ross
Delaware:
Caesar Rodney
George Read
Thomas McKean

Column 5
New York:
William Floyd
Philip Livingston
Francis Lewis
Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
Richard Stockton
John Witherspoon
Francis Hopkinson
John Hart
Abraham Clark

Column 6
New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett
William Whipple
Massachusetts:
Samuel Adams
John Adams
Robert Treat Paine
Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins
William Ellery
Connecticut:
Roger Sherman
Samuel Huntington
William Williams
Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
Matthew Thornton

Jul 02

Bipolar II vs. Depression

A recent discussion with a friend of mine leads me to comment once more on Bipolar II Disorder. This condition is so similar to Major Depression, and particularly Unipolar Depression, that it is often mis-diagnosed. General Practitioners certainly cannot tell the difference, so I urge you to see a Psychiatrist if the following applies to you:

You are diagnosed with Major Depression or Uniupolar Depression, especially with a co-morbid anxiety disorder that it resistant to medication or your medications stop working after a while, and you have to change meds periodically.

OR

Your depression is atypical in that you are agitated at the same time you are depressed, even if you are also lethargic. This is a sign of a “mixed state” and is very dangerous. Some 20% of people in undiagnosed mixed states commit suicide.

For further information read the book Why Am I Still Depressed? by Dr. Jim Phelps, or visit his Web site at http://www.psycheducation.org/.

If you think you may have Bipolar II Disorder, GET HELP!!! I cannot emphasize this enough. Without proper treatment, you are at extreme risk for suicide or other self-harming behavior, including alcoholism or other chemical dependency. Also, the disorder can and will grow worse over time without proper medication to control it, and will worsen into Bipolar I. Just to add an additional scare, the extreme end of the Bipolar Spectrum is schizophrenia, and you definitely do not want to end up there.

I can give my personal testimony that mood stabilizing drugs are far more effective than anti-depressants at treating Bipolor II. As a matter of fact, anti-depressants most often make it worse and can trigger hypomania or mixed states (for information on what a mixed state feels like, see my Friday Snippet for June 22). On my current regime of Lamictal and Abilify, I am feeling more like a person than I have in a long, long time. I am getting a lot done, both in writing and in yard work, and feeling much better about myself and my prospects for the future. In fact, for the first time in years, I feel like I actually hjave a future. You can’t imagine how good that feels!

Hope everyone is well and stays well. If you want to know more, write me using the “Talk To Me” button at the top of the page. You want disturb me or intrude in any way. As Ben Franklin so famously (probably) said: “We must all hang together, or we shall all most certainly hang separately.”